|Combat Method:||Physical (Hook Claws, Maw)|
Deep within the dark depths of The Swim lie creatures once completely uninvested in the events transpiring above them. These predators have no bias and take no sides- their motives go as far as the drive to pursue and hunt down anything that attempts to flee from them. The ongoing war has made encountering prey in the ocean depths a rarity, meaning deep-sea creatures have begun a slow ascent in an attempt to ambush prey in waters much higher up, drawn by the distant sounds of conflict.
The Anglermaiden is one of many of these predators that were lured in and captured by one of the distract Captains' private squadrons, not only to make the coastal waters safer for sailors but to attempt to use her to their advantage in battle. (Optional dumb-cute detail: Her caretakers have discovered she can be made surprisingly co-operative and docile by bribing her with various shiny jewels and man-made trinkets , which she plans to add to her collection back home once her forced conscription duty is over.)
What she lacks in intelligence she more than makes up for in her lightning-like reflexes. This coupled with her hooked claws make evading her grasp difficult to achieve for long. She's mastered using the coils of her tail to spring herself towards her prey at an impressive speed, or leap out of the ocean surface to surprise unwary sailors in the dark after luring them closer by hanging her light above the water.
- Anglermaiden's ability activates after cards have been flipped, but before combat calculations begin. This means that if the 5 damage would defeat the Opponent's Hero, combat calculations will not begin, and Anglermaiden will take no damage.
- The Opponent's Hero only takes the damage if their Hero has 9 or less Reflexes. This value doesn't need to be the Hero's base value, so any bonuses (such as from Strategies) will count towards this.
Anglermaiden has remained mostly the same throughout her life. She was designed as a character first with no real ability in mind, so we slotted an ability on that felt like it'd fit the art more than anything. This seemed best for something that fitted the idea of the anglerfishes, baiting you in to attack them only to get eaten. So we gave her a low, vulnerable stat that begged to be attacked, but then a punishment clause for attacking her: specifically one that required a different stat being high, so as to spread stats thin. This should mean that the attacker should either be giving up Mind bonuses to buff their Reflexes, or already have all their Mind and Reflexes high, leaving their Body vulnerable to Anglermaiden's high Body damage.
Her specific stats have changed quite often though, although never by much. Her >9 Reflexes requirement took a lot of balancing to get it to feel fair for both parties. At first it was a bit too easy to reach it, and making her ability effectively useless. After that it felt completely impossible and made her never worth attacking at all. Then back to being too easy.
After a large stat overhaul of the game where many Heroes' stats were rebalanced, and another couple of tries on Anglermaiden, we came to a number that felt high enough to worry about, but just low enough that attacking her felt like an option. The 5 damage was also in question of being too high sometimes, but we didn't want people just soaking the damage in and not caring about it, we definitely did want it to feel like it wasn't worth it.
Especially for those people who just don't read the card, and never even knew what they were in for.